The Health Benefits of Pineapple

April 1, 2008


Brief History of Pineapples

The pineapple is indigenous to the South American countries Brazil and Paraguay. Pineapple was well distributed throughout Latin America by the indigenous population before Columbus found it and took it back to Spain.

Attempts to cultivate pineapple in Europe failed due to the fruit’s need for a tropical climate in order to grow. Portuguese and Spanish explorers carried pineapples aboard their ships as protection against scurvy, and soon introduced them into Africa and Asia where they flourished.

Nutrients in Pineapple

Pineapple is an excellent source of vitamin C and manganese. It’s a very good source of vitamin B1. It’s a good source of vitamin B6, copper, magnesium, and dietary fiber. Bromelain is is a proteolytic enzyme (enzymes that digest protein) found in pineapple, and to a greater extent in pineapple stems.


Nutritional value per
100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 202 kJ (48 kcal)
* Carbohydrates 12.63 g
Dietary fiber 1.4 g
* Fat 0.12 g
* Protein 0.54 g
Thiamine (Vit. B1) 0.079 mg
Riboflavin (Vit. B2) 0.031 mg
Niacin (Vit. B3) 0.489 mg
Pantothenic acid (B5) 0.205 mg
* Vitamin B6 0.110 mg
* Folate (Vit. B9) 15 ?g
* Vitamin C 36.2 mg
* Calcium 13 mg
* Iron 0.28 mg
* Magnesium 12 mg
Phosphorus 8 mg
Potassium 115 mg
Zinc 0.10 mg
A comprehensive breakdown of nutrients can be found in the Nutrition Database where this food can also be added to a meal planner.

Pineapple Bromelain for Sinusitis

In Germany, where bromelain is approved by the German Commission E for the treatment of sinusitis, a clinical trial demonstrated that children diagnosed with acute sinusitis recovered significantly faster when treated with pineapple bromelain compared to other treatments.

Pineapple Bromelain as an Anti Inflammatory

There is some clinical evidence that suggests the effectiveness of bromelain as an anti-inflammatory, and may reduce swelling, bruising, healing time, and pain following surgery and physical injuries. In a 3-month study involving subjects with mild acute knee pain, it was concluded that bromelain might be effective in ameliorating pain.

In a clinical trial involving patients with periarthritis of the shoulder, and also patients suffering from painful osteoarthritis of the knee, pain reduction with the treatment of proteolytic enzymes such as bromelain was comparable to those treated with NSAIDs (Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs)

Pineapple Bromelain for Mucha Habermann’s Disease

Mucha Habermann’s disease (Pityriasis lichenoides chronica) is a rare disease of the immune system of unknown origin, characterized by recurrent red, round and elevated lesions on the skin. In a 3-month study involving 8 patients with Pityriasis lichenoides chronica (PLC), they were treated with bromelain. It was concluded that bromelain is an effective therapeutic option for PLC after all patients showed complete recovery.

Pineapple Bromelain for Thrombosis

Studies have shown bromelain to display fibrinolytic and antithrombotic activity, and two clinical trials on heart patients have shown a practically complete elimination of thrombosis.

Pineapple Bromelain as a Digestive AidAvocado

Bromelain aids and promotes digestion due to its protein digesting capabilities, and may relieve symptoms of stomach upset or heartburn.

Glycemic Index of Pineapple

In a study to determine the glycemic index of various foods, it was concluded that pineapples have a low GI of 46 – 51.

Adverse Reactions from Pineapples

Bromelain, which breaks down proteins, may cause irritant dermatitis. Pineapples may also cause allergic dermatitis. (Irritant dermatitis may occur in anyone who touches a pineapple; allergic dermatitis occurs only in an individual who is sensitive to a particular substance).

1. The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods by Michael Murray, Joseph Pizzorno, and Lara Pizzorno.
2. Benders’ Dictionary of Nutrition and Food Technology.
3. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference
4. Massimiliano R, Pietro R, Paolo S, Sara P, Michele F. Role of bromelain in the treatment of patients with pityriasis lichenoides chronica. J Dermatolog Treat. 2007;18(4):219-22. PMID: 17671882.
5. Walker AF, Bundy R, Hicks SM, Middleton RW. Bromelain reduces mild acute knee pain and improves well-being in a dose-dependent fashion in an open study of otherwise healthy adults. Phytomedicine. 2002 Dec;9(8):681-6. PMID: 12587686.
6. Felton GE. Fibrinolytic and antithrombotic action of bromelain may eliminate thrombosis in heart patients. Med Hypotheses. 1980 Nov;6(11):1123-33. PMID: 6256612.
7. Klein G, Kullich W. [Reducing pain by oral enzyme therapy in rheumatic diseases]. Wien Med Wochenschr. 1999;149(21-22):577-80. PMID: 10666820.
8. Braun JM, Schneider B, Beuth HJ. Therapeutic use, efficiency and safety of the proteolytic pineapple enzyme Bromelain-POS in children with acute sinusitis in Germany. In Vivo. 2005 Mar-Apr;19(2):417-21. PMID: 15796206.
9. Image by job_earth

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  1. Pingback: Pineapple Compound Treats Cancer, Inflammation and Poor Digestion < Bromelain> | Bayareacannabis

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